Sheffield family store on move to end supermarket battle

Positive: Andrew Williamson.
Positive: Andrew Williamson.
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A FAMILY-run store is opening in new premises next week after a planning battle put its future under threat.

Williamson Hardware, on Fulwood Road, Broomhill, will open on January 7 in a smaller unit next door to its long-standing home.

Earlier this year the landlord chose not to renew the shop’s lease, and plans were submitted for alterations which would turn the building into a supermarket. More than 100 people supported Williamson Hardware - which has been trading for more than 50 years - by objecting to the plans, but they were approved by Sheffield Council planners.

Williamson Hardware is now moving into the former Blackwells bookshop, which closed in November. Sainsbury’s is expected to open in its old home next year.

Andrew Williamson, director of the store, said: “Everything is more positive now.

“All the staff are pleased and we are looking forward to the move.

“We’ve got plans for changing the business a bit and we have new fittings. There is a lot of work to do.

“But the new shop is a lot smaller, that’s one of the problems. It’s like getting two quarts into a pint pot.”

Andrew said he hopes the move will not impact staffing levels. “This business is not like the big boys, it’s more like a family. I have said if anybody goes it will be me.”